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Allen M., Esq.
Allen M., Esq., Lawyer
Category: Military Law
Satisfied Customers: 19307
Experience:  Lawyer and current JAG officer.
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I was SIQ on narcotics and I went to the cdc on base to pick

Customer Question

I was SIQ on narcotics and I went to the cdc on base to pick up my children. Now I am being charged with a article 92 and because I cannot account for whereabouts enroute to cdc from my command to the cdc that day I am also being charged with article 107 because I left my command at 1515 and signed out my children from cdc at 1605. I contend that I only went from command straight to cdc because the time enroute makes that statement false. What should I do? should I accept NJP or take chances at court martial. Truth is I don't remember much of the time period I was very loopy on Narcotics.
JA: Since laws vary from place to place, what state is this in?
Customer: Virginia on base
JA: Have you talked to anyone in the chain of command about this?
Customer: of course because I am being offered njp currently. I have already gone thru exective officer inquiry
JA: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: no
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Military Law
Expert:  Allen M., Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for trusting your question to JA today. I am a licensed attorney with over a decade of law practice and over 20 years of experience in the legal field. I’m happy to be of assistance.

Taking this to court martial could backfire on you, because your argument here concerning the time frame requires that you state, on the record, that you can't remember what happened because you were under the influence of narcotics (though legally prescribed). That would mean establishing a confession that you shouldn't have been driving in the first place.

You'd then be potentially subject to court martial for that offense, so it'd really not be in your best interest to state that on the record.

If you were already going to court martial, then sure it would be worth presenting that as fact evidence to show that you didn't intentionally engage in an illegal act, but sort of accidentally did. It would reduce the potential punishment.

But demanding trial by court martial on these facts isn't really useful and actually would serve to harm you.

If you have any further questions, please let me know. I invite follow up questions, so use REPLY for those. If you have no further questions then good luck going forward and please do not forget to rate my service with a three, a four or preferably a five star rating so that I receive credit for working with you today. Please rate me based on my service and not on your satisfaction with the law, which I am not in control of and I am just reporting to you. Also, feel free to request me in the future, if you have questions concerning a different matter.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I was not driving my wife was.
Expert:  Allen M., Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Ok. That is significantly different then.

You can demand trial by court martial and have your wife testify concerning your whereabouts.

If you were supposed to be on quarters, then there isn't really anything wrong with you being in the care with your spouse while the kids are being picked up. Your wife would need to speak to the trip and why it took so long to pick up the kids. What was taking place?

Demanding trial by court martial though is always dangerous. You are trading a non-conviction (NJP's are not convictions) for the possibility of a federal conviction, which can't be expunged.

Expert:  Allen M., Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Hello, I wanted to check in and make sure that there was not any additional information that you required after the response I previously provided to you. If you need further assistance, please use REPLY and ask me for any additional information you may need. If not, take care and have a great day.